I am a Kenyan citizen, with a Masters degree in Economics (public finance and health economics) and with over seven years of experience in international development and development data. This has been in the fields of poverty and inequality research, financial investments to target eradication of poverty as well as promoting open data, transparency and accountability as key drivers to decision-making and good governance. These are also key ingredients in empowering communities to use data to change their lives.
I see myself as a data user, and also a data champion. I was part of the team that advocated for the government of Kenya to start publishing its budget information online, back in 2014- information we earlier on had to purchase and convert to machine readable format in order to make meaningful analysis. With the opening up of the budget, citizens are more engaged in the budget process, and government is also making more efforts to involve citizens and including communities left behind (particularly through poverty) in the budget priorities.
I have researched, written and presented on various elements in the data ecosystem. I have published on how citizen-generated data initiatives contribute to change in the development context. Aligned to this, is the politics of data and why it matters who produces data. From this MAVC in its end of program report concluded (specifically message 4) that: Transparency, information or open data are not sufficient to generate accountability.
I currently work as a Policy Associate at GPSDD. This position that allows me to bring insights on data and its challenges from a country (and sub-national) perspective- through my day-to-day interactions- and apply this to the bigger picture of GPSDD’s vision of supporting countries, regions and continents deliver the data revolution.